Earlier today, we reported about 58-year-old truck driver Edward Durr, who defeated longtime State Senate President Steve Sweeney. Durr, who only spent $153 on his primary campaign, has just won southern New Jersey’s state Senate race, beating out the longest-serving Senate president in the state’s history.
Having lived in New Jersey his whole life, Durr started his campaign by introducing himself door-to-door and, as a self-proclaimed “simple man,” he made a campaign video primarily by himself.
Meet Edward Durr, the Republican truck driver who could oust longtime Senate President Steve Sweeney – with spending just $153 on his campaign. pic.twitter.com/4q6BuwTQVp
— The Lakewood Scoop (@LakewoodScoop) November 3, 2021
When referencing his opponent, Durr said, “He did not fight for the people, and that had to end. I’m a person who believes in the right to the people. I’m a firm constitutionalist believer, and I believe in people’s rights. When I saw how people were being mistreated or ignored, that angered me to say: ‘I’m going to make my voice heard.'”
After watching the state’s leaders respond to the COVID-19 pandemic and being disappointed in their actions, he decided to take a shot at running for office. In his campaign video, Durr focuses his criticisms on Sweeney’s passive response to the state Governor, Phil Murphy, forcing COVID patients into nursing homes which resulted in over 8,000 senior deaths.
His campaign video also appeals to all New Jersey families who lost their jobs during the pandemic, pointing out that 1/3 of the state’s small businesses were forced to close down. He also highlights the rate at which residents are leaving the state. The video ends with Durr declaring that it’s time for a change and, as he gets on his motorcycle, tells his viewers “Let’s end single-party rule.”
Now, Politico is reporting that the defeated NJ State Senate President Steve Sweeney is refusing to concede the race to the truck driver who humiliated him, citing (surprise, surprise) 12,000 ballots that were just found in one NJ county. The name of the county where the 12,000 ballots were “found” has not yet been released.
“The results from Tuesday’s election continue to come in, for instance, there were 12,000 ballots recently found in one county,” Sweeney said in an email to POLITICO. “While I am currently trailing in the race, we want to make sure every vote is counted. Our voters deserve that, and we will wait for the final results.”
Sweeney, who as Senate president is the state’s second-most-powerful elected official, was down more than 2,000 votes to Durr, a truck driver who says he spent less than $10,000 on the race.
Sweeney’s projected loss in South Jersey’s 3rd Legislative District was the most shocking in an election that featured a number of surprises, including Gov. Phil Murphy’s closer-than-expected victory over Republican Jack Ciattarelli.